The vote count begins in most parts of France in the first round of the French presidential election. Rough cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT. NO REPORTER NARRATION. Voting closed and counting began in polling stations across France on Sunday (April 23) in the first round of the presidential election. Voting is permitted in larger towns until 8 p.m. local time (1800GMT) and no results are allowed to be published until that time. In the last opinion polls of the campaign, centrist Emmanuel Macron narrowly led a tight race in which abstention could prove key, ahead of far-right nationalist candidate Marine Le Pen. Sunday's voting will be followed by a runoff on May 7 between the top two candidates.